Sunday, March 28, 2010

Adult Spirituality Group notes (3/28/10)

All ten adult attendees rejoiced in the chapter, "Being a Grownup", since it felt personally relevant. Pastor Dan crowed, "A brilliant chapter!" (Soon afterward, the momentary gleam of sunlight that we all took notice of, faded into Seattle overcast....)

We bubbled over the insightful quote, "The capacity to know and affirm and live from the conviction that "it's not about you" is a crucial marker of grown-up-ness." (p. 104) Babies learn to cry and coo and sign language to get mom and dad to eventually figure out their needs. When we attain adulthood, we learn the communication tools to get attention, services, and things, much more effectively. Not only do we learn to specifically articulate our desires, but also gain a complex sophisticated understanding of what we really want.
--For example, Day's father Ajit has learned the complicated skill of communicating in a way that doesn't skip past social graces. Ajit has learned to take time & space for personal development, e.g., meditation, to center himself for his divergent interactions. By opening up to our common spiritual core, he is better able to relate about difficult topics via our commonness. "The art of being able to say something unpopular lies in doing it in such a way that those to whom you are saying it know that you still care about them and that you are in it with them." (p. 106)

Many men are socialized to get angry as a way to express their emotions. Many women are instead socialized to cry. How to manage in balance so that we can both articulate the nuances of our mature perspectives as well as communicate our personal relationship to the perspective? Day feels that Pastor Dan like his father has predominately learned to manage his emotions, e.g., expressions of tears and anger during his sermons in a effective way to impart his message.

Next week, we'll discuss:
1. "The Prayer My Father Taught Me (p. 108)
2. "Friendship" (p. 112)
3. Marriage: What's the Point? (p. 119)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

BCUCC Adult Spirituality Group Notes: (3/21/10)

We all had insights about the Common Grace “Hyperparenting” chapter, especially Francis:
  1. “There has got to be a balance – All things in moderation, including moderation. The rule is simplicity in life.” – Georg Myers
  2. Parents foster their children’s development through “accepting love” and “transforming love”. (bottom of p. 98)
  3. Parents should determine what their goals are so that they don’t merely react to divergent opportunities for their children.
  4. Kids often have too much structured time. Instead they need down time to construct on their own and be creative. This doesn’t mean passively veg in front of the TV but, e.g., have a quiet walk in nature (to explore the subtle complex ecosystem and sort out and distill their minds).
  5. There’s a Slow Parenting movement. The philosophy is basically that “maximizing” a child’s structured exposure to new learning and resources is not helpful. It’s as important for the family to spend time together to bond, e.g., to sit down for a meal. It’s important to give time to foster the parents’ relationship. Check out -
  6. Finland has a great education model. Until children reach age 7, the emphasis is on social relationships and exercise, not on school learning. Early on, Finland students are dead last, but later are at the top! (Day’s sister will base her children’s development on the Waldorf Answers at, which has a similar approach.)
  7. A way for working parents in the U.S. to maintain influence in their children’s development is to send children to YMCA and neighborhood centers, as well as post reminders and inspirational note cards around the house.
* Next Sunday, we'll discuss these chapters:
1. Being a Grown Up, p. 102
2. The Prayer My Father Taught Me, p. 108
3. Friendship, p. 112

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Tony Robinson Visits!

How many book groups get to meet with the author?! We did last Sunday, 2/28. All agreed it really enriched our already rich experience reading his book, Common Grace. We also agreed the time went way too fast and we had more questions for Tony. Some of the questions/comments topics we discussed with him included the effective way he relates parables to current life issues. Several of us have found ourselves quoting from his book during our everyday lives. I actually posted his comment about parenting being a sacrificial act on my Facebook page - it felt real to me at this stage of my life! I invite others from the group to comment on their thoughts from the meeting. I also invite others to pose questions and we can try to forward them to Tony for more input since the time went so fast.